The Anderson Center for Autism has designated Dutchess County as an Autism Supportive County, making it the first in New York state to receive such a recognition.
To be named an Autism Supportive County, a county must demonstrate its commitment to Anderson’s mission of optimizing the quality of life for people with autism across areas such as education, infrastructure, and sustainability.
Dutchess County’s work was first formalized when County Executive Marcus Molinaro announced the ThinkDifferently initiative, at which point a committee was formed to explore possible services and programs in this area. From that came a host of programs services and changes making the county more inclusive for people with disabilities.
Dutchess County’s efforts illustrated a comprehensive effort to enhance life for people with autism and special needs in education, inclusion, infrastructure, and sustainability, the center said.